The drops of salt water spin off the football as it speeds away from me — beautiful, tiny, silver globes of light flying up and away from the ball

I love the combination of light, and water, especially as it flies in the air off a ball. I throw the football to my daughter. We are at a hot, sandy beach in Coronado, California. We love the beach. I raised my girls at at this beach and another favorite spot in La Jolla.

We laugh, we toss the football, it flies true, the water is bright.

I like the true and flying ball tossed between two people who are extremely okay with each other. My daughter and I are. We toss it back and forth. I like it when it spins in a perfect spiral. We each throw a couple perfect passes,  NFL kinds of passes out over the bright blue waters of San Diego.

Yesterday I ran into someone who pretended that it was okay between us. It isn’t.

People do that. They lie.

I find that to be singularly unattractive. No bright drops in the air here. No good tosses. Nothing true, righteous, good. For there is nothing that can fly back and forth in nicely spinning spirals between two word tossers when there are lies in the mix.

I don’t like pretending. I don’t like what is false. I don’t like what is spun wrong. And I’m not that fond of lies. I used to be, but I’ve pretty much gotten over that.

This morning I read some of the Psalms. I love the Psalms — lots of bright drops of truth spiraling through the air here. I ran across an interesting turn of phrase in Psalm 36:2.

In their own eyes they flatter themselves
    too much to detect or hate their sin.

We do that, think too much of ourselves to detect or hate our own sin, particularly if we are hooked on  highly additive substances like pride, greed or jealousy.

Crazy! True! And damaging. Lies are always damaging, and really the most damaging lies are the ones that we believe. We don’t call them lies but instead brand them as the truth. Scary, for really the most dangerous lies are when liars that tell them think that they are telling the truth.

I know, because I do this, deceive myself. We all do — from  time-to-time which can add up to most of the time.  We think we are honest, because we  admit small negatives about ourselves once in a while, when caught, but we do so only to hide our worse offenses behind the shabby ruses of a few minor confessions.

It’s something to get past.

How? Not easily.

I actually don’t think that we can get past our own lies very often, but I have seen that life can get us past them, past the self-flattery, the pretending and the ensuing falsehoods.  But to do this, life must get tough on us, and take a couple of whacks at us, right between the eyes.

If that happens, that we get pounded, I’d recommend we take the licking, and come up asking for more.

A beating, extreme trouble in life,  has a way of potentially knocking untruth out of us, so we may, if we will, become more humble, admit our falsity and put on stronger reading glasses. Then, through the clear eyepieces of bitter experience, perhaps we will be able to detect our private, personal and oh-so-deceptive prevarications, and then out the darkness in us.

Today, I went kayaking and snorkeling along the La Jolla cliffs with my wife, Linda. Beautiful, the bright blue water, the bright blue sky. It’s what we do in my family, and have done so many times, to clear our heads from too much work and a bit of untruth, especially the untruth that the world is only violent and ugly and full of lies.

Under the water, through my goggles, I ogle some shafts of sunlight shooting down to the bottom of the sea, illuminating a brilliant orange Garibaldi set against some bright green surf grass.

Nice! Bright. Real.  Orange. True.

Coming back to the kayak, I crawl in and Linda goes out for her snorkeling.  We take turns climbing out of and back into the craft,  and then we point and laugh at each other. We are ridiculous. Trying to get back into the boat, we hitch ourselves up on our stomachs and lay across the boat sideways. We look like beached seals, stranded on plastic.

It’s bright between us. Our relationship is full of truth. We laugh. We see ourselves as we are.

Then we head back. The water flies off our paddles as we power home though the bright light and truth.

  1. laurelhasper says:

    This is phenomenal. It really is a hard fight for the truth! But a good one!

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